Friday, August 30, 2013

Five on Friday

It's Friday and I'm posting?! What has this world come to? {Kidding...kind of.}


-ONE-
I'm so looking forward to this long weekend, even though it's supposed to be a scorcher in Dallas. The main reason? Baylor football {well, college football in general} is baaaaaaaaack! While I'll always miss RG3, I'm so excited to see my Bears back in action. And, this is our very last season playing in Floyd Casey Stadium {"The Case"}, as the new Baylor Stadium is well on its way to completion. Sic 'Em! 



-TWO-
This is our very last Friday to not know if Baby W is a he or a she. We find out next Friday at 2:45 p.m.! I can't wait to see if I will have a precious little girl or a rough and tumble little boy. Time is moving at a snail's pace! We've already registered at Babies 'R' Us and Pottery Barn Kids...now I just need to add pink or blue stuff to the registries! :) 


-THREE-
Brandon got free tickets yesterday from a client to last night's Cowboys vs. Texans game at Cowboys...I mean...AT&T Stadium {where my service was no better than before, ahem Jerry}, so we went on a whim. While it was a sad game -- to quote my little sister, "That was a bust!" -- it was really nice to be spontaneous for once! Ha! {Ignore my pony tail and huuuuuge cheesy smile, please. Kthanks.}


-FOUR-
Like everyone else in the South, I am just begging for fall to get here already. I keep pinning recipes that involve pumpkin; fall decorations; and precious fall outfits. Although I'm not quite sure why I keep pinning these adorable fall outfits, since I know beyond a shadow of a doubt I'm not going to be able to pull them off nearly as well this year. *Sigh.* A girl can dream though, right?! {As I sit here in my sundress and white cardigan...}

Exhibit A


Exhibit B


Exhibit C


Exhibit D


-FIVE-
We watched "The Great Gatsby" the other night and I was NOT IMPRESSED. Like, at all. {Sorry, Leonardo.} I told Brandon that tonight, all I want to do is curl up and watch "The Big Wedding" On-Demand, even though it got less-than-spectacular reviews. Has anyone seen it?


Hope y'all have a great weekend!





Wednesday, August 28, 2013

On Miley Cyrus and Chicken Pot Pie

Could I have picked two more random and opposite things to talk about today? I mean, honestly. 

And I'm well aware that the VMAs were on Sunday and it's now Wednesday, but I needed some time to stew on what I was going to say about Miley's performance {if you can call it that}. 

It all boils down to this: I feel very, very sorry for her. That performance told me beyond a shadow of a doubt that she's desperately crying out for love and attention and is acting out because she's not getting it. 

I hear people saying, "What happened to the sweet little Miley? The 'Hannah Montana?'" I thought that, too. But then I think that she was so young when that show started, likely very influenced by her family, and she's now seeking attention in the only way she knows how -- much like a toddler does -- by acting out. 

I thought her performance was trashy, uncalled for, disgusting, and frankly, makes me wonder about the world my children are going to grow up in if this kind of trash is already uncensored on TV. I think she needs to grow out her hair, put some clothes on and quit that "twerking" business, understanding that Rihanna, Nicki Minaj and Lady Gaga already have done this act and it's old. 

I want Miley to realize that the love, attention and praise she's seeking will never, ever come from this world. Romans 12:2 says, "Do not conform to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is -- His good, pleasing and perfect will." In other words: "You will never influence the world by trying to be like it." I also think she needs to realize that the only person who can truly, truly give her the love she needs and is so desperately wanting is God. Galatians 3:26 says, "For you are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus." As my Grammy always says to us, "Remember who you are and whose you are: you are a child of the King." 

I'm going to get off my soapbox now, but if I have to see "twerking" down here, I'm going to get right back on it! 


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Now, on to more comforting things. Like Chicken Pot Pie. 

I've blogged about this chicken pot pie before, but I think it warrants another post because it is just that good

Now that my appetite is back, I've been craving comfort food. You know, beef stroganoff, chicken spaghetti, chicken pot pie...things that are relatively easy, comforting and remind me of home. 

So, when I was {and still am} burnt out on Pinterest recipes, I pulled out my trusty spiral notebook, which, at one point or another, I wrote down all of my favorite family recipes. Through the years, I've scribbled new ones on pieces of paper and taped them to the back of already-full pages and printed some off and shoved them in the back of the spiral. 

And one of those was my mother-in-law's "homemade" chicken pot pie. 

This is one of Brandon's favorites, and it's a bonus that it's also easy to cook. And when he tells me, "It tastes just like my mom's!" it makes it a straight winner. 


Here's the recipe:

Ingredients
-1 lb. chicken breasts, boiled and shredded
-1 box of two Pillsbury pie crusts
-1 (8 oz.) container sour cream
-1 can Veg-All
-1 can cream of potato soup
-1 can cream of chicken soup
-Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions
-Boil chicken breasts for 30 minutes; remove and shred using a hand or stand mixer. While they're boiling, take the pie crusts out of fridge and set out to make easier to handle. 
-Stir together: shredded chicken, drained Veg-All, soups and salt and pepper. 
-Lay one pie crust on bottom of greased pie plate. Pour mixture into pie crust. Top with other pie crust and pinch together to seal. Poke holes in the top to vent. 
-Bake for 30-40 minutes at 375*. 


Monday, August 26, 2013

Back to School, Back to School

In honor of the first day of school, I present to you the song I sing every morning on the first day of school. 


To all my teacher friends and family who are teachers and/or those that work for a district like me, I hope you have a fabulous day! 

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Weekend

Well, here we are: Sunday yet again! School starts tomorrow, so I felt it looming all weekend. And because I felt it looming, this was the weekend of projects galore and getting things done around the house. {More on that later.} 

But seriously, with the start of school, I felt like it was time to quit messing around; I felt like I had a deadline that I had to meet! I will be all cliche and say that the summer flew by {probably because I had my head in a toilet for half of it} and now that I'm working for a school district, I feel like I'm the one back in school and I'm thinking in terms of semesters now instead of months. And it made me smile to go to the grocery store this weekend and see the supply aisle half-empty; seeing the parking lots at Target, Wal-Mart and the mall jam-packed; and haircut places full of rowdy kiddos antsy for Monday. 

But anyway...

Friday:
We had our last Restaurant Week reservation at Al Biernat's, and this time we went with my co-workers/friends and their husbands. We had such a great time and the food was delicious. 


I seriously don't know what I'd do without these girls! 


Saturday:
To start our full day, we made pumpkin spice waffles and pumpkin spice coffee. It was so tasty! 


Our biggest project was finishing our guest bedroom that had been halfway done since we moved in last September. 

This bed and bedding was ours when we got married, and I absolutely love it. But, our guest room is pretty small, so we had to get creative. 

This is the view from the door, which is at an angle in our hallway.


This is the view when you walk in the door. 


Here's the view of the armoire next to the bed, which was Brandon's grandmother's. 


And here's the view of the bed and armoire. 

And obviously I am obsessed with monograms. :)


In addition to finishing the guest bedroom, we:

  1. Bathed Oliver and clipped his nails
  2. Brandon mowed and weed-eated the yard
  3. Brandon power washed the garage
  4. I went to the grocery store and to Payless to buy more Comfort Plus' 
  5. We did five loads of laundry and cleaned the whole house
  6. Brandon took my car to be serviced {which ended up with a new belt, freon, state inspection and oil change}
  7. We went to Home Depot for sprinkler heads and came out with new patio furniture
  8. Brandon cleaned/fixed and added said sprinklers 
  9. Ordered our glider {a gift from my grandmother} 
  10. Cooked supper and pumpkin spice cookies 
  11. Brandon put together said patio furniture 
  12. Watched the Dallas Cowboys game 
WHEW!!! Needless to say, we slept like champs last night. 

Today was my sister-in-law's final baby shower, so I went to that with my mother-in-law. It got me so excited to find out what this baby is in just TWO WEEKS!!! 

Hope y'all have a great week! 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Weekend

I guess I have resorted to only posting on Sundays now! Sorry, y'all. 

Friday:
We had another Restaurant Week reservation at Wolfgang Puck 560 in Reunion Tower, which, for all of you non-Dallasites or non-Texans, it's the giant "ball." 

It gives a great 360* view of the city from 560 feet up in the air. 


I wasn't as pleased with the service or the food at 560 as I was at III Forks last week. Our waiter basically wrote us off when we told him we wouldn't be partaking in any beverages other than water, which really chapped me. I mean, hello, I told him I was pregnant so obviously. For the rest of the evening, he was very rude and only showed up at our table when I had zero water left in my glass and I was looking around for him to refill it. 

Anyway, we ordered the California Roll to start; then I had the Pork Belly Pot Stickers, while Brandon had the Hot and Sweet Corn Summer Soup; for our main courses, I had the Crispy Pork "TonKatsu" (which was basically a giant pork chop...not a fan), and Brandon had the Braised Short Rib. For dessert, they brought us each a tiny sampler platter of Vanilla Citrus Cheesecake, Chocolate Truffle Cake and Strawberry Sorbet. 


However, it was a great evening with Brandon and I was so comfortable because I finally broke out a maternity dress for the first time. 


Saturday:
We slept in and then I read the latest edition of "Real Simple" while sipping pumpkin spice coffee. Then, as if I didn't get enough sleep, I took an hour nap before running a ton of errands in the afternoon. 


My biggest project for Saturday was organizing all of our files: birth certificates, mortgage information, home buying documents, wills, Oliver's rabies certificates, car titles, etc. 

It was originally in a bunch of random file folders and notebooks in our hall closet. I really am Type-A/OCD...but it's selective. I will have the cleanest house, but don't look in a few of my drawers or closets. And this is the prime example. 

So, I purchased a huge file box and hanging file folders from Target and went through every. single. document. with Brandon to ensure we needed it, and then organized it in the folders in the box. 

Before...


...and after. 

Sunday:
I didn't sleep very well, so I finally got up and had coffee on our back porch. It has actually been cool {for us Texans, at least} in the mornings, and it was the perfect morning to relax outside in the quiet. 


We started Sunday School today and then went to church, then came home and had leftovers for lunch. My mother-in-law stopped by to look at a bunch of the sweet baby clothes of mine that I brought home from my parents' a few weeks ago. Brandon is currently playing golf and I'm watching HGTV {what else?!} on the couch. 

Hope y'all have a great week! 

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Weekend

How is it Sunday afternoon already?! Since I'm back to working on Fridays, the weekends absolutely fly by. 

Friday:
I had a doctor's appointment, so Brandon and I toured a daycare prior to that and then went to the appointment. We heard sweet Baby W's heartbeat and found out we'll find out the gender in a mere four weeks! I'm so excited I can hardly stand it. 

That evening, we went to our first restaurant for Dallas Restaurant Week: III Forks. We love Restaurant Week, but hadn't been in two years! III Forks absolutely didn't disappoint. Brandon started with red wine and the She Crab Soup; I had iced tea and their famous III Forks Salad. For our main course, we both ordered the Filet Mignon, which came with a side of creamed corn, mashed potatoes with gravy, green beans and fresh tomatoes. For dessert, Brandon had the chocolate ganache cake and I had the cheesecake with raspberry topping. It was amazing! 

We have one restaurant a week booked through August, and I'm excited to share our thoughts/food with y'all! 

{I look so "meh" in this picture. I was tired and full. Note to self: more blush.} 


Saturday:
Brandon had golf lessons, and I cleaned the house all day: SEVEN LOADS OF LAUNDRY!!! It was right about that time to clean our duvet covers and bath mats, plus our weekly rotation of sheets, towels and clothes. 

At one point, I looked up and Oliver was on top of the kitchen cabinets. Seriously, if this doesn't creep you out, I don't know what will. 


That evening, we had Angel Chicken and watched "Father of the Bride: Part II." It is seriously one of my favorite movies, and Steve Martin's character reminds me so much of my dad in certain situations. 

My favorite part of the movie has always been "The Baby Suite." I mean, how drop-dead gorgeous is this nursery!? 


It has always been my favorite. 


Sunday:
We went to church, then went out to eat for lunch. This afternoon, we have been working to fix up our guest bedroom, especially since we'll be having visitors after the baby's born! 

My favorite "curtains" in the world are painter's dropcloth curtains; we have them in our bedroom, the guest bedroom and will have them in our dining room, as well. They're so cheap and easy! I followed the tutorial on Maggie's blog here. {Keep in mind, however, that we have 9 ft. ceilings in the bedrooms, so we have to get different dimensions than what she recommends.} 

To spruce up the room a bit, I am having our comforter and shams professionally cleaned. I also purchased this monogrammed pillow and this clock from Pottery Barn. I still need to find a throw for the end of the bed, something to go on a large wall and a few other odds and ends. 

Once the room is finished, I'll post pictures...so stay tuned! 

Hope y'all have a great week! 

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Liebster Award


The Liebster Award is for up and coming blogs that have less than 200 followers. So what is a Liebster, you ask? Liebster is a German word that means sweetest, kindest, dearest, cute, endearing, etc. Such a thoughtful award! Thank you for nominating me, Leigh Anne!

Here are the questions I was given to answer:

1. Why do you blog?
I blog as an outlet, but also as a way to "journal" and look back to see what we did and when, how I felt about it, what I cooked, where we visited, etc. 

2. What is your go-to dinner recipe?
My go-to dinner recipe is spaghetti. It's been my favorite meal since I was little {I know, easy to please!} and it's so easy. I always keep a box of frozen garlic bread in the freezer as a quick little side for the spaghetti, and if I'm feeling adventurous, I'll throw in a salad. 

3. How do you unwind after a long day?
Pre-pregnancy, I would pour myself a large glass of wine and sit on the couch in sheer and udder silence. Obviously I can't have wine now, so I draw a warm bubble bath and just soak. I also love getting in the kitchen to unwind because after a long, stressful day when I feel like I could do nothing right, I know I can get in the kitchen and do something right in there. 

4. What is your favorite blog post you've written?
My favorite blog post has to be when I announced I was pregnant. It was so hard to keep that a secret for 12 weeks {it seemed like an eternity} and I was so excited to let my followers know. 

5. What tips do you have for preparing for the week? (at work or at home)
I've actually written about this before {here}! The things that make me feel most prepared and organized going into a new week are: having all my grocery shopping done and meals planned for the week; having all my laundry done and my house cleaned; and making sure my tank is filled with gas. 

6. If you were given $20 to spend on anything, what would you spend it on?
I'm such a spender; my husband will tell you that outright! If I had $20, I would probably buy a little outfit for the baby or something small for our house from Home Goods

7. What does your perfect Saturday look like?
My perfect Saturday {these days} is waking up not feeling nauseous -- I'm serious!, having a decaf pumpkin spice latte in bed while watching HGTV, walking out of my bedroom to a clean house, watching Baylor football on TV and lounging in yoga pants and an oversized T-shirt all day. Oh! And not having to cook. Clearly I'm hard to please. :)

8. Which season is your favorite and why?
If you didn't catch the Baylor football reference in the answer above, I absolutely LOVE fall. We got married in the fall, so it's our anniversary time, and I adore college football. {Side note: I saw this thing on Pinterest that said, "She was a kind, sweet Southern girl until football season rolled around." That is so true with me!} Anyway, fall in Texas is such a reprieve from 100+ degree summer days. I love pumpkin spice-smelling anything and anything pumpkin in the oven. Fall is absolutely my favorite! 

9. What do you splurge on?
I honestly splurge on my make-up. I do wear a few drugstore cosmetics {namely my eyeliner and mascara}, but I spend a pretty penny on my primer, foundation, eyeshadow and lipstick. 

10. Where would be your dream vacation spot be?
That is such a hard question because we LOVE to travel. I'd say anywhere in the Caribbean on a beach, just Brandon and me. 

11. What do you pack for lunch during the week?
It's a big mix, honestly. I'll typically do leftovers or make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, but since I've been pregnant it's been so easy to grab something to go and eat at my friend Liz's house during our lunch hour. 

11 Random Facts About Me Are...

1. I'm left-handed and have blue eyes. I'm a walking recessive trait. 

2. I am a self-professed clean freak. I tend to wash my duvet cover and bath mats more than the normal person, and I've been known to get on my hands and knees in my shower -- with a toothbrush -- to clean the grout. 

3. If I could have clean sheets every day, I so would. There is nothing better than crisp, white, clean sheets! 

4. I write incorrectly: I hold my writing utensil on my ring finger {as opposed to my middle finger}, so I have a lovely callous on my left-hand ring finger. Looks lovely in the "bling" pictures. Ha! 

5. I think you have to have your heart broken one good time before you truly understand how to love and respect the person you end up with. 

6. I pop my knuckles, wrists, elbows, hips, neck, knees and toes. I am absolutely going to have rheumatoid arthritis one day. {And just typing this, I popped my neck and knuckles.} 

7. I have never, ever eaten a Big Mac. 

8. I am such a texture eater, and this has come with age. Water chestnuts, red apples, sweet potato casserole, nuts {especially pecans} and real mayonnaise gross me out. 

9. While we're on the subject of food, I could eat wine and cheese for supper every night if Brandon would let me {and I was not pregnant}. I also adore pasta, don't have to have meat but probably once a week, and am a sucker for southern cooking: fried chicken, fried okra, mashed potatoes with brown gravy, cornbread, creamed corn and sweet tea. It's a wonder I'm not 5,000 pounds. 

10. Songs and scents always take me back to places and times. I'll listen to certain songs and be immediately transported back to summers growing up, or smell a certain men's cologne and be right back in Waco during the spring semester as a freshman in Collins. It happens. :)

11. I studied abroad in London during college, and if I ever had the chance to move there, I wouldn't even hesitate. 

So, there's me! Random, right?! 

Have a great weekend, y'all! 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Weekend

Sooo...another weekend wrap-up on a Tuesday! 

Thursday:
I was soooo sick, so I stayed home all day. This little buddy didn't leave my side {errr, feet} all day. 


Friday:
I got a much-needed haircut; she cut off three inches!!! Then, I picked my aunt up and she and I drove to my parents' house in East Texas. 

My mom and dad are moving out of the house they've been in for 24 years, so we went down to help them pack and move. Well, I really can't do much moving, but I helped pack! 

Since they're moving, my mom gave me two of my boxes. One was full of my baby clothes, including this sweet jacket and bonnet! There were also a ton of little smocked Feltman Brothers dresses, and they were so sweet! I'm seriously hoping this baby is a girl so she can wear them! {But if it's a boy, I will be just as thrilled, too. As long as the baby is happy and healthy, I don't truly care.}


Also in my box was my baby doll that I carried around {by her hair} for-EV-er, Mary. I think she is a Madame Alexander baby doll, but I'm not sure. I remember carrying her around and sleeping with her for a long time. My great-grandmother, Memmie, made me a pillow {that I affectionately called "Po} that I carried around with Mary, too. In fact, when either one of them had to be washed, I would call the washing machine, "The Mary and Po Wash." 

I know she's so ugly now, but it was so special that my mom kept her. We lost Po somewhere down the road, but at least Mary is still with us! :)


The other box held my drawings {according to my mom, "You drew ALL the time!"}, various school projects, report cards, medals, etc. One thing I found was this letter I wrote to my parents from Washington, D.C., where my cousin, Robert, and I were on a trip with my grandparents. I was 10 at this time. 

Also, side note, I think it's so cute my grandparents sent this letter off to be mailed when I'm sure we were only gone a week or so. I feel like people don't do that anymore! 

And, another side note, check out the TV show we were watching. Anyone remember "Figure it Out?" {Or as my 10-year-old self said, "FIGURE IT OUT."}


{click to make bigger}

Before we left, my mom suggested my sister and I take a picture in front of "the" pine tree in their front yard. Many pictures were taken in front of this pine tree in my parents' front yard: first day of school, Easter, prom, dance, etc. We will miss this pine tree! 


And since I'm not going to devote a separate blog post to this, here is how both Oliver and I felt about watching "The Bachelorette" last night. 


I know it's just a TV show, but I just didn't think her heart was in it with Chris at all. Good for them if it works out, but bless Chris' heart for having to play second fiddle to Brooks for the rest of their relationship. 

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

And before I go: Happy Birthday to my friend Liz! 

Monday, August 5, 2013

I Need Your Help!

Hi, friends! I hope your weekend was fun! Mine sure was.

I'll get around to posting about my weekend at home tomorrow, but in the meantime, I have a question for y'all. And seriously, HELP ME! 

I have a co-worker that calls me, "Miss Brittany." I would understand if she were 20 years older than me {I had a former client do this}, but she's only two years older than me. I almost feel like it's a little demeaning. 

How do I {politely} tell her that I'd rather her just call me by my name? I'm a "Big Talker Betty Crocker," but when it comes to confrontation -- especially in the workplace -- I cower down a bit. 

Ready, go! 

{Heelppppp meeeeeeeeee!!!}